The Bulls posted their second straight win by defeating the Rockets 120-100 in Houston on Monday night.
The Rockets played without Victor Oladipo, DeMarcus Cousins and Christian Wood. It is his eighth loss in a row.
Here are 14 observations:
1. Stephen Silas hit a starting five all 6 feet 6 inches or less with his team exhausted: John Wall, Eric Gordon, Jae’Sean Tate, Danuel House Jr. and PJ Tucker. In fact, Rodions Kurucs was the only active rocket above 6-6.
two. The Bulls responded well to that fact early on, breaking a 20-2 run in the first quarter to turn an initial 5-2 deficit into a 22-7 lead. The Rockets fell back with a 17-7 run to finish the first down with just five, and lost 54-48 at the half.
3. Coby White shot out of the gates to the game-high 13-point tune on 6-of-11 shots at halftime (plus 7 rebounds). He left for the locker room early in the third after suffering a heavy knockdown contesting a fast break layup from John Wall, and appeared to hit his head on the basket post, but returned to the game later in the period. He and Billy Donovan said that after the game he left with a cut lip, that he should not enter the concussion protocol.
(White’s night ended with his third double-double of the season with 24 points and 10 rebounds. He caught a spark from deep in the room to finish 10 of 16 ground shots and 4 of 7 of 3. An electric performance.)
Four. In the time White was out of the game in the third, the Bulls went on a hellish streak of 31-16, extending a 58-51 lead to 89-67. That third quarter, in which the Bulls built a 31-point lead, was as steamy and efficient basketball as they’ve played all season. Some approaches:
- By outscoring the Rockets 46-26 in the third, the Bulls posted their fourth-highest touchdown of the season, shooting 19 of 25 (76%) from the field, 7 of 9 (77.8%) of 3 and 10. shooting. attend.
- Zach LaVine scored 14 points on excellent shots of 5 of 5, 3 of 3 of 3, after scoring just 7 (with 5 assists) in the first half.
- Thad Young added 8 points, 4 rebounds, 3 assists and a myriad of magic plays during the career.
5. The departure of Wendell Carter Jr. should be in the conversation for his best performance of the season, and certainly the best in five games since returning from injury. He finished with 18 points, 13 rebounds, 3 blocks and 2 steals, taking care of business against the Rockets’ front line.
6. Patrick Williams also enjoyed a strong night with 14 and 7 boards. This contest marked his 29th game of the season, equal to what he played last season at Florida State.
7. White, Carter and Williams led the charge in the first half before the floodgates opened. Often this season, the Bulls have relied on the heroics of LaVine or the game of their veterans to steer clear of opponents, so seeing three non-LaVine “young core” members had a significant impact. it was encouraging.
8. However, those veterans still filled in the stat sheet one more time. Young finished with 17 points, 8 rebounds and 5 assists. Tomáš Satoranský had 10 points and 4 dimes. Garrett Temple his 2 triples.
9. After a 1-for-7-from-3 night, Denzel Valentine is now 2-for-20 from behind the arc in his last four games, although he did throw a loud dunk.
10. The Bulls put six players in double figures and cleared 50 percent of the field and 40 percent of 3. Signs of a healthy offense.
eleven. I’m not sure I can call it a “game of revenge,” given the margin of defeat, but old friend David Nwaba equaled a career-high with 22 points, racking up 9 rebounds and 2 steals to start off with his typical hyperactivity.
12. One stat Donovan will like: The Bulls committed just 12 turnovers in this one. They entered the game with an average of 13.1 turnovers per game in February, the 10th in the NBA and well below their average of 16.1 at 29th all season.
13. The Bulls also kept the Rockets shooting below 40 percent and rebounded them by nine. Feathers on the cap of a defender who’s looking better lately …
14. … and a comfortable win to go to 14-16. These types of victories, easy against inferior competition on paper, have not occurred in recent seasons.
Up next: back home to the Minnesota Timberwolves on Wednesday.
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